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The Iranian Foreign Ministry on Friday released a statement to mark the 20th anniversary of conclusion of the “treaty on the basis for mutual relations and the principles of cooperation between the Islamic Republic of Iran and the Russian Federation”.

The statement said the anniversary of signing the treaty has coincided with the exchange of messages between the Iranian and Russian leaders.

“The Islamic Republic of Iran regards the Russian Federation as a powerful neighboring country and its friend on the basis of ‘mutual cooperation and respect’, and is willing to further enhance its relations with that country (Russia) in all fields,” it added.

“In light of resolve of the leaders and high-ranking officials, the cooperation between the two countries for the fulfillment of common interests has gone beyond the level of bilateral relations, has entered the area of contributing to the regional and international security, and has become stronger more than ever,” the statement said.

The Foreign Ministry finally emphasized that Iran and Russia work in full harmony against “the inhumane and unilateral sanctions and the Western interference in the affairs of other countries”, cooperate to prevent the third parties from playing a role in Tehran-Moscow ties, and agree on the need to respect the international law.

Iran and Russia signed the treaty on basis for mutual relations and principles of cooperation in Moscow on March 12, 2001.

According to the treaty, the two countries have agree to “build relations with each other on the basis of sovereign equality, cooperation, mutual trust, respect for sovereignty, territorial integrity and independence, and non-interference in each other’s internal affairs.”

Iran and Russia have also undertaken “not to use force or the threat of force and not to use their territory for the carrying out of acts of aggression and subversive and separatist activities against the other Party.”